Latest News Editor's Choice

Opinion / Columnist

Mugabe risks destroying own legacy by making unchecked rantings

05 Mar 2018 at 08:56hrs | Views

The history of Zimbabwe will never ever be complete without the mentioning of the name of its first Executive Prime Minister and then President, Cde R.G Mugabe, never!!! He fronted the liberation struggle with the likes of Joshua Nkomo, Josiah Magama Tongogara, Jason Ziyapapa Moyo, Leopold Takawira only to mention a few. He presided as the prime minister and later executive president for a period of 37 (Thirty seven) years.

During his reigns, he managed to open Zimbabwe to the world, transforming most of its 'crude' institutions into polished ones. Amongst the institutions, the Zimbabwe Defence Force (ZDF) is one of them, where he was the Commander-In-Chief, until he left office. Under his stewerdship, the ZDF managed to maintain peace in Zimbabwe and abroad. Good examples on foreign missions being the ZDF involvement in the Mozambican Civil War between 1983 until 1992.From being one of Africa's post-cold war peacekeeping powerhouses in the 1990's over the past decades, Zimbabwe's contributions to the United Nations Peace operations have been modest. Zimbabwe's first United Nations deployment came in 1991 in the United Nations Verification Mission in Angola(UNAVEM II).The good performance of the Zimbabwean detachment earned the country a credible reputation of professionalism that led to further UN requests for its personnel since then, particularly the Zimbabwe National Army.

In 1992, Zimbabwe was seconded for troop deployment to Somalia (UNISOM II) until 1994.In 1998 to 2002, the army was on a mission to the then Congo war. All missions were undertaken with distinction. Thanks to the policies of the then Commander-In-Chief, for making all the above initiatives!!!

A direct inference of the now former President and Commander-In-Chief's statement that was quoted in one of the weekly publication, and just to repeat the quote,

"...the same colourful soldiers are uneducated people who are jealous of Intelligence operatives who are paid more than them. Cde Mugabe told guests at his private party that,"...the military had sided with President E.D Mnangagwa, accusing them of beating Intelligence personnel saying they were paid higher than them. You wear good 'suits' hence protecting Mugabe.....aaah they didn't know that you do not need to be educated to be a soldier. Normally soldiers are recruited from Grade 7 or Form 2, while the Intelligence team is recruited from those who are educated"

We acknowledge that it is within his rights to express his mind and views as provided by the country's constitution, I believe the former president is overreacting hear. Those rights, as they are provided in CHAPTER 4 of the constitution under Bill Rights section 44-87, it must be noted that the rights in the BILL OF RIGHTS are not absolute. They may be limited by a law that complies with section 86 of the constitution.  He ought to respect the rights of Zimbabweans as the people expressed their views democratically. Certain rights of individuals cannot be taken away by one person or state if they are within the constitution. These are called fundamental rights and freedom. If the former president feels his rights were infringed he is free to approach the courts and challenge the infringement.

Truly, the former President's statements were triggered by the actions of the soldiers under the command of the then General Chiwenga on the 15th of November 2017.He accuses the soldiers of rolling out Tanks to the streets during Operation Restore Legacy, which saw him leaving the hot seat together with the criminals which surrounded him. There is no any positive relationship between being unlearned and the presence of tanks in the streets. The former president forgets that the secure environment that all of us, including him, have enjoyed as a country has not been a walk in the park for the Defence Forces. While our perennial adversaries worked round the clock to frustrate our security and integrity, the Zimbabwe National Army has always been alert to these machinations and maneuvers, and being equal to the task, they have succeeded in overcoming any such challenges.

Legal experts including continental Blocks extolled the Zimbabwe National Army for its political stabilisation intervention, which they said was done in the spirit of national interest and security. They argued that all was done in accordance with the dictates of and tenets of the constitution and in respect of Sadc and AU security protocols. All was done in a way that prevented even a single drop of blood, promoting national peace and development a clear sign that our soldiers are educated, according to the specifications of their profession. Education in its widest sense is learning to live and interact, so can we say the ZDF members are academic midgets?

To drive my point that the ZNA members are educated home, on the 15th of November 2017, knowing that Cde Mugabe had been put under house arrest, they acted with considerable restraint and commendable respect for the people and the incumbent President,R.G Mugabe. The millitary received everyone's imprimatur and support across the political divide. They did what they did whilst emphatically reaffirming President Mugabe as the Head of State and Government at the time, and their Commander-In-Chief.

Beyond any stretch of imagination, it is unbelievable to say our Zimbabwean soldiers are uneducated, when Cde Mugabe used to boast of the Officer Cadets where Advanced level is a strict requirement. It is disputable when most colleges and Universities in the country are taught by ZNA lecturers.
The former president is not new to 'throwing' insults to government workers. At one time he told teachers in the country that he himself was once a teacher, but left the profession when he realised that it was not a rewarding choice. Most viewed such rantings as either a joke or one of the greatest errors or reckless statements he made in his thirty something years' career.

Making such derogatory statements, whether targeted at teachers or soldiers is counted as an effrontery. Impudence at its peak! Cde Mugabe's statement against soldiers, to say the truth was wild, incoherent and inconsistent with their track record, it was emotional, with normative prevarications which are not supported by any empirical evidence.

It is not surprising that Cde Mugabe is being fed with lies against the sitting President, Cde E.D Mnangagwa by double standards people or bootlickers. These people are trading double edged swords between the two. We have seen many who we know to have been too loyal to Cde Mugabe, trying to gossip him, undermining his relationship with President Mnangagwa, or vice versa, in order to try and preserve their own employment and financial assets et cetera. This is highly uncalled for. Within the same current government, not so many changes were made in terms of personnel, yet another loophole through which information continues to leak to people like Jonathan Moyo and the other G40 members; it goes without saying it that they are well informed about the going's-on in the party.

It is only Cde ED Mnangagwa who had the temerity to tell the then President Mugabe that the people had spoken in their numbers against him. Many were afraid of doing this, even up to now they play blame games, thinking maybe one day he would bounce back to power, NEVER!!!!Not even a single day had former President Mugabe listened to the people's voice like President Mnangagwa does. The police were a nuisance in the country and their high corrupt tendencies costs Zimbabwe as a country as they scared away tourists. The former president never acted but the people were crying louder day by day.

He was given the utmost protection between 15 and 24 November 2017 when the public bay for his head, live or dead!!! His statement was a mockery to the ZDF who oversees his everyday life in the country and this cannot be taken serious by average thinking people as they all knew that he was old and obviously age is taking its tow.

Source - Prof Luke Mbune
All articles and letters published on Bulawayo24 have been independently written by members of Bulawayo24's community. The views of users published on Bulawayo24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Bulawayo24. Bulawayo24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.